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Local News

Litchfield Looking for Route 66 Centennial Input

In 2026, the states through which historic Route 66 passes will celebrate the 100 th anniversary of the route’s designation. Posts on many Route 66 social media platforms show that travelers are already 

making plans to travel the route during its centennial. In preparation, the Litchfield Tourism Office, the Litchfield Museum and Route 66 Welcome Center and other area Route 66 landmarks and businesses would like to form a group comprised of those who are interested in helping plan for this once-in-a-lifetime celebration in the Montgomery County area.Route 66 was designated on November 11, 1926 by the United States Numbered HighwaySystem. Illinois was the first of the eight states through which the route passes to have its portionpaved, or slabbed, as it was called. Eight miles of the route pass through Montgomery County, with two alignments going through Litchfield. 

Every year, the historic route attracts not only visitors from across the U.S., but also thousands of international travelers, and local economies benefit from route tourism. From Chicago, Illinois to Santa Monica, California and in every community in between, Mother Road tourism boosts employment opportunities, household incomes and government revenues. 

The tourism office will host the first planning meeting in the Carnegie Building at 400 N. State Street in Litchfield on Wednesday, February 21 at 7 p.m. The public and all interested parties are invited to attend the meeting. Those who would like to attend are asked to RSVP by calling the tourism office at 217-324-8147 or sending an e-mail to